Piano Repairs

Repairs

Repairs and Other Piano Services

General Repairs

Piano Repairs As one admires their piano as it sits in the living room, one hardly considers the fact that it is wonderfully built out of literally thousands of separate parts! It is an amazing instrument. Occasionally, it needs to be repaired. A sticking key , or a key that makes the wrong sound, no sound at all or does not stop the sound of a note when you take your finger off the key is usually an indication that a repair is in order.

Quite often( about 75% of the time) the malfunction can be traced to a small problem that needs to be addressed: a lose screw, an action ( the name of the assembly of parts that engage to cause the hammer to contact the string when the key is depressed)component that is out of alignment. Frequently debris or a foreign object has found its way inside the piano and needs to be removed. Each piano tuning comes with a free piano maintenance check up and MOST OF THESE SMALL REPAIRS ARE FREE OF CHARGE PROVIDING YOU ARE PLANNING TO HAVE YOUR PIANO TUNED. If you would like these minor problems fixed without having your piano tuned a modest service charge is applied.

The stuff I have removed from inside a piano that prevents the piano from functioning correctly includes but is not limited to: buttons, keys, coins, pins, paperclips, pens, pencils, crayons and other writing implements, greeting cards, small toys, homework, matches, wax from candelabras, candy, nuts, seeds, party favors and holiday decorations.

About 25% of the time the piano requiring a repair needs to be partially disassembled to remove, repair and / or replace broken, worn or damaged parts. Some, but not all common repairs involve fixing broken or chipped keys, broken hammers, broken action or damper components, worn or broken action springs, and felt. Broken strings sometimes need to be repaired, replaced or removed, Occasionally, cracked or broken flanges (wooden hinges that hold action parts together) need to be replaced and or repaired. Loose tuning pins or bridge pins sometimes need correction. Soundboard ribs need to be glued and screwed back to the soundboard. Pedals get noisy: squeaky, creaky, clunky This can be very annoying. These are just a few examples of the types of repairs that involve a reasonably priced labor and parts charge. All repairs are professionally performed the correct way and made to last based on over 20 years experience fixing pianos.

If you think something needs to be repaired on your piano call and we can discuss options on the phone, A free written estimates of repair parts and labor costs will be provided.


  • Grand Piano PartsGrand piano action showing underside of hammer shanks, tops of whippens and back checks.
  • Grand Piano PartsPiano action pulled out of grand piano for inspection. The keys and hammers are all connected and the entire assembly slides in and out like a dresser drawer.
  • Grand Piano PartsKawai carbon fiber whippens, back checks and let off buttons. High tech; minimizes wear, tear warping, breakage. Not affected by change in weather, temp or humidity. Wow!
  • Grand Piano PartsThe piano action removed from the piano.
  • Grand Piano PartsThe piano action, keys whippens and hammers sitting at rest in the action cavity.
  • Grand Piano Parts
  • Grand Piano PartsThis is the whippen. It is the part that connects the key to the hammer and makes the hammer hit the string when you press down on the key. It is subject to wear and tear and often needs to be adjusted, fixed or replaced when the pressing down on the key DOES NOT make the hammer hit the string correctly.

    The grand piano whippen. This is the part that makes the hammer strike the string when you depress the piano key. Each key and hammer has its own whippen. This whippen is from a Baldwin piano. The three screws you can see are used for making adjustments to make the key feel and respond to the particular preference of the player. Or to adjust for normal wear that occurs from normal use.
  • PedalsThe pedals and levers under a grand piano often need adjustment and repair to eliminate unwanted noises (squeaks, clicks etc.).
  • Pedals
  • PedalsThe pedal, with exposed pedal brackets and trap levers. The right pedal create sustained sound, so that when you remove your fingers from the key(s) the sound of the note continues to ring. Depressing the left pedal makes the piano more quiet. Depressing the middle pedal usually just sustains the notes in the bass section on an upright piano. On A grand piano the middle pedal often does the same thing or operates a Sostenuto system if the piano is equipped with such a device.

    Pedal noises, trap lever noises and other unwanted noises that occur when depressing the pedals are very common. Hundreds of parts in the piano begin to move in unison when you depress the pedal. It just takes one loose, worn or misaligned part to create an annoying squeak or click.

    These noises can be the result of normal wear and/ or misuse/ overuse of the pedals. They are often difficult to pinpoint and can be very easy or very difficult to repair. The pedals should always be depressed with a gentle touch. This will help your pedals work smoothly and quietly for a long time without needing repair or service.
  • The sound board (underneath: grand piano or in the back: upright piano). Sometimes needs to be repaired (ribs separate from soundboard) to correct distorted buzzing or vibrating sounds that may occur when some notes are played.
  • The plate, strings, bridge and dampers in a grand piano.
  • BridgesThe lower portion of the plate in an upright piano. The heavy wound copper bass strings cross from upper left to lower right over the plain wire steel strings. The treble bridge is visible to the left of the pedals and the bass bridge is visible to the right. Occasionally the bridge needs to be repaired if it separates from the soundboard creating a significant drop in volume.
  • Bridges
  • BridgesView of the treble bridge in a Wurlitzer upright piano. Notice that the top row of pins leans to the left and the bottom row of pins leans to the left. This arrangement locks the string down on the bridge when the string is tightened so it does not move and create strange vibrating noises when the note is played. Sometimes these pins become loose or the wood splits and the pins move causing the string to become difficult or impossible to accurately tune. This problem can usually be fixed by re-gluing the pins back in their original position
  • BridgesAnother view of the bridge with strings and hammers. In the lower left hand corner you can also see the damper levers.
  • BridgesAn excellent example of a bass bridge in an upright piano.
  • BridgesThe left end of a well preserved treble bridge in an upright piano.
  • BridgesUpright piano with action (hammers, whippens, dampers all mounted on the action frame) removed for string repair. A gap indicating missing/broken strings in the copper colored bass strings is visible to the left of the Yamaha logo locate top left center of plate. The S shaped treble bridge (partially obscured by the keyboard) and the base bridge to the right of the pedals are visible.
  • Upright PartsA repaired hammer from an upright piano: bass section. Quite often the hammer head can break off or the wooden hinge (called a flange) on the bottom becomes loose or broken. Sometimes these repairs can be made without removing the hammer from the piano and sometimes, if the damage is severe enough and work space is limited the hammer must be removed, repaired and then reinstalled.
  • Upright PartsAn upright piano whippen from a Yamaha Piano. This is the part that makes the hammer strike the string. The top end of the spring actually fits into and pushes up on the bottom of the L shaped part but has been taken out for viewing purposes.
  • Upright PartsThe arrangement of the whippen and hammer in an upright piano.
  • Keys and hammers in a drop action spinet.
  • A closer look. Broken strings have been removed. Piano is ready for new strings for 3rd and 4th tuning pins from the right.
  • New string is positioned on the bass bridge and held in place with clamps so it doesn’t move when tightened onto the tuning pin (not visible).
  • 4th pin from the right now has new string (it’s shiny) installed.
  • New strings, second and third from right installed.
  • Both strings have been replaced!



Voicing

repair2 Voicing is the name of the procedure that involves changing the tone of you piano so it is more suitable to your personal preference. Pianos with a bright loud tone can be made to sound more mellow, tender, subdued and softer. Pianos with a soft subdued sound can be made to sound brighter, more vibrant, more exciting and powerful.

This procedure involves manipulating the texture and resiliency of the hammer felt with various voicing tools and solutions which alters the manner in which the hammer makes contact with the string(s) and rebounds to create the sound and tone one desires.

Often hammers on older pianos become worn and grooved from constantly hitting the strings for many years. These pianos often have a brittle, trebly, loud twanging tone. Voicing the hammers on these pianos restores the beautiful tone that characterized the instrument when it was new. The results are very pleasing and lasting.


Piano Detailing

Piano Detailing I always enjoyed working in piano showrooms or at those large university piano sales events. Surrounded by 50-150 brand new sparkling, shining, shimmering instruments! Wow! Piano Detailing involves restoring the beauty of your instrument to as close to original showroom condition as possible.

Piano detailing entails cleaning the accumulated dust and dirt from under the piano strings, polishing the plate and outer case to remove oxidation and grime, cleaning the keys to make them gleaming white and polishing and buffing all the bright work on the piano: hinges, casters pedals, lift rods, etc. The results are always pleasing and are in some cases quite astounding. Results vary depending on the condition of the piano.


Climate Control

climateControl A climate control system installed in your piano will preserve the life of your piano and MAKE YOUR TUNINGS Last longer!

Pianos are manufactured to be kept in an environment with a constant relative humidity of approximately 45% and temperature between 65 and 70 degrees. Quite often in churches, schools, homes and other environments this ideal is not attainable or affordable. A climate control system installed in your piano will minimize the adverse effects of extreme temperature and humidity changes.

Extreme temperature and humidity changes will adversely affect the tuning stability and playability of your piano. Excess humidity will throw your piano out of tune, make the keys sluggish and sticky and will cause rust and corrosion to form on the metal internal components of your piano: strings, pins, springs, plate, etc.

Excessive heat and extremely low humidity can also throw your piano out of tune and cause wooden components such as keys, hammers, action parts, key bed, soundboard and bridge to warp, crack, split and or break apart as the wood shrinks because of reduced moisture content of the wood in a hot dry room.

A climate control system installed in your piano will prolong the life of your piano, preserve the value of your piano, increase tuning stability and make your piano more enjoyable to play.

Climate control systems are highly recommended for pianos in homes in areas that experience extreme changes in weather and humidity (such as the Jersey Shore) and also for pianos that are in the same room as a fireplace that is frequently used.

We use Dampp Chaser's Piano Life Saver System

Call for free brochure or if you have questions

609-242-3931


Moving your Piano

I frequently receive inquiries about moving pianos. My Advice? Get a professional piano mover. They do this type of work all the time, they are insured, and they are efficient. They know what they are doing as they move a delicate instrument that can weigh several hundred pounds into, out of or within your house.

Call me for a referral if you would like one.

PianosComplete.com

Are you looking for music/piano accessories such as: benches, lamps, metronomes, castors, covers, locks, cushions , etc.? Visit PianosComplete.com and shop from the comfort of your home.

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